A portable ballast testing system and an associated sample-concentrating device have been developed by two Japanese companies, Satake Corp and MOL Techno-Trade.
Details of Satake’s Viable Organism Analyzer (VOA1000) were first published in an academic journal in 2014 and an application for a European patent was filed last year. It uses the pulse-counting FDA method to estimate the number of large and small organisms in a sample. It claims to be able to detect an individual organism in a 100ml sample.
Together with MOL Techno-Trade, the companies have jointly developed a compact Ballast Water Sample Concentrator. This allows quick and easy preparation of sample waters to check for organisms in ballast water, the companies said in a statement today.
Both components can be mounted into a backpack to carry on board a ship and the VOA 1000 is operated by a touch panel. It needs 10 minutes to stain large-sized organisms and 30 minutes to stain small-sized organisms, using the FDA reagent.
The system will be on display at the Bari-Ship Maritime Fair in Imabari, Japan, during 25-27 May.